AlumniNewsletter2014.. - Carlmont Parents Nursery School
CARLMONT PARENTS NURSERY SCHOOL
At CPNS, teachers not only help children
develop a strong foundation of life skills
and academic knowledge, but they also
help parents grow into teachers and advocates for their children’s well-being.
Planting the Seeds of Tomorrow
By CPNS Director & 3AM Teacher Nancy Rahimi (‘96)
Nancy facilitates a
favorite class activity: wrestling!
(Right) Show-andtell time
Long, long ago I decided that when I grew up I would have a job that helps people
to experience more happiness in their daily lives. I considered social work, health
care, counseling and many other helping ﬁelds, but I never dreamed I would be called to work in early childhood educa on. Life conspired to get and keep me involved in the lives of young children and
families. Then, a er joining CPNS with my ﬁrst born, I felt working here might be my des ny. I saw that at CPNS, teachers not only are able to help children develop a strong founda on of life skills and academic knowledge but they also help parents to grow into teachers and advocates for their children’s well-being.
Here at CPNS, I follow in the footsteps of many great leaders and I strive daily to con nue the good work they have begun. Occasionally, I get to see how a ny pebble (a thought or idea) I drop into the lake of another’s mind sends ripples that
1 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 2013-2014
reach far beyond what I could
To switch metaphors, I have
no ced through the years that some mes my job is to plant a seed, some mes to add some fer lizer and some mes just to protect something while it
Earlier this year, I ran into a
former student whose child is
now in high school. She shared with me how much her me at CPNS meant to her. While here, her son struggled to connect
with his peers and was o en uncomfortable in group situa ons. She was at mes uncertain how to guide his growth and how to
increase posi ve family connec ons. The informa on she gained here about child development and paren ng gave her the tools she needed to get her
son the support he needed so
that he could succeed. A er a rough start in elementary
school, he is now ac vely involved in several extracurricular
ac vi es, ge ng good grades and maintaining friendships.
His mom said that without her
CPNS experience she would never have been able to understand why he was struggling
and advocate for his needs. She now volunteers her me helping other parents of children
with special needs navigate the
public school system. Twelve
years ago, neither of us knew
how important that one night
class on this topic would end up
being for her family.
I feel so fortunate to be part
of a team which maintains high
ideals, works for constant improvement, implements research-‐based best prac ces and always places the true needs of
children ﬁrst. Together we are be er. May you too con nue to drop pebbles and enjoy the
2013-2014 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 2
We need to keep our tui on compe ve and our fundraising obliga ons reasonable for our families.
A letter from President Linda Beroza (‘09 & ‘11)
ALUMNI: A er a two D EAR
year hiatus between my two
at elementary school. School is fun--and full of challenges.
older children (now nine and
When problems arise, we can seven years old) and my young- all hark back to skills presented
est child, we are back at CPNS. and prac ced at CPNS to help Stephen, my current CPNSer, is smooth out the bumps.
having a blast on the tricycles
Straddling the worlds of preand in the sandbox, and I am
school and elementary school
ge ng more good informa on. I lends an interes ng perspecam always looking to expand my
ve and makes me appreciate repertoire of paren ng tools. CPNS. The smaller size of the Alas, this is my last year
CPNS family creates a wonderhere, so I am savoring this part
ful community, where it is easy
of childhood and parenthood.
for people to get to know and
My two older children, create bonds with other famiAnita and Paul, are faring well lies, and prac ce paren ng skills 3 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 2013-2014
that will become the founda on of their rela onship with their children. Parents also gain conﬁdence about par cipa ng in their children’s educa onal and social lives--so important at the
elementary school level where
the mentoring and nurturing for
children or parents are largely
We hope, of course, that the gem that is CPNS will be here for families in the years
to come. Our vision is to create an independently sustainable
future and ﬁll all of our classes. Range Planning Commi ee that began its work in January.
Here is what you can do:
Spread the word about CPNS Here is the situa on:
and share your posi ve expeIn 2011, we lost our en re riences. Word of mouth and funding from the Sequoia personal interac on are the Adult School, the organiza on best ways to promote CPNS.
with which we are aﬃliated Oﬀer your ideas to the Revin order to keep the type of
enue and Space, Marke ng, program that we have. One and Long Range Planning of the most important things
Commi ees men oned these funds paid for was
Lend your professional experOver the years, through carese and advice in the followful ﬁscal management, CPNS ing areas to CPNS: endowacquired a reserve that is now ment fund planning, legal
helping to make up for this
counsel (primarily contracts),
shor all. However, this cantaxes/accoun ng, insurance, not be a permanent ﬁx.
adver sing/marke ng, social media/networking, SEO Here is what we have done to (search engine op miza on) plan for the future:
Established a Marke ng ComDona ons are always welmi ee to look into adver sing come.
and enhancing CPNS’s appeal.
Created a Revenue & Space I look forward to hearing your
Commi ee to inves gate ideas. You can reach me at presihow to increase our revenue
through other uses of our
Have a great rest of the year!
space within the parameters
of our lease, insurance and
tax status proscrip ons.
These commi ees laid the groundwork for our Long
school lends an
(Previous) Linda and her
family, including alumni
Anita (‘09) and Paul
(‘11), at Spooky Social
(Below) Linda at the
2013-2014 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 4
This past November, the Krug/Pont Family visited the school; it was a mul -‐genera onal event-‐-‐and for good reason. From 1986 to 1990, Pam Krug was CPNS’s own Teacher Pam; but before that, she was a par cipa ng parent with her daughter, Erin Krug. It was then, that Erin met fellow student Michael Pont. Two decades later, the two alumni married! Now they reside in Aus n, Texas with their own children, Owen and Emma. Together, Erin and Michael walked along the same paths and under the same trees that brought them together as children; and with Pam, they reminisced and shared stories with their own kids. Coming Full Circle
By 4PM Teacher Aide Lori Basile (‘91)
In 1989, when my son Brian was four years old, we started
to look for a preschool for him.
Being that it was October and the school year had already
started, many schools were full.
We came across CPNS and yes, they had openings! I fell in love
with the school as soon as I
began the tour. They had a block
room, an art room and an awesome outside play area. I also
loved their philosophy. I knew
this would be a great place for
my son. Brian a ended CPNS for two years: one year with Teacher Pam Krug, and the next with Teacher Nancy McDuckston and Pre-‐K Teacher Jana Perkins.
During our year with Teacher
Pam, I met many new friends, one who is s ll my closest. 5 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 2013-2014
Teacher Pam le the next year to become Director at Ladera
Preschool in Portola Valley. She oﬀered me a job as an aide there, and while I had never
thought about becoming a preschool teacher, I accepted. Loving it, I later got my cer ﬁcate and became a teacher. During
that me, Ladera hired Nancy Rahimi, who I had worked with at CPNS in the 2AM Class. Of course, later Nancy became the director of CPNS, and I con nued at Ladera for a total of 22
A few months ago, I ran into
Nancy again and we talked. CPNS was looking for an aide, and it was an ideal job for me.
I was returning to a place that
held so many happy memories.
Now, every day I am at CPNS, I see that the “magic” is s ll there, just as it was 25 years
A Love of School
Kelly Greenﬁeld (‘12 and ‘13) is assistant principal at North Star Academy in Redwood City. An educator of 18 years, her experience includes ﬁve years as an administrator and 13 as a teacher.
As an educator, you must have thoroughly researched your preschool op ons. Why did you pick CPNS? I chose CPNS because of its play-‐based approach. My son is very much a tac le learner who thrives outdoors. I loved that the children had the opportunity to choose what they wanted to do
each day, and for Jack to be able to be outdoors,
rain or shine--running, digging, climbing, riding
bikes, playing in water, pain ng and exploring-‐-‐
was exactly what he needed at that me. In the 4PM Class, his interests expanded to building, playing with trains, and all of the other elements
children ﬁnd in the Block Room. To this day, Jack loves playing with Magna Tiles, and this came from spending me in the Block Room at CPNS. The Pre-‐K class was also a perfect add-‐on to fully prepare him for the reali es of kindergarten. CPNS allows children to be who they want to be, rather than force them into roles and ac vies that they are not comfortable with or ready for. Preschool is a me for play, explora on and social skills development. This is why I chose
What do you think your children will take with them from their me at CPNS? CPNS taught them a love of school, and that is priceless. There were days when they were sick
and started to cry because they could not go to
school that day. This love has carried forward
into elementary school for my son, and that is an
awesome thing. As well, I believe their conﬁdence grew because they were allowed to be their own
individual selves. I hope this stays with them as
they grow older.
How has CPNS enriched your family’s life? Being a part of the CPNS community is one of the greatest gi s we were given as a family. The friendships that were forged (for both the children and adults) will carry on for years to come.
The teachers care deeply about the students, the
parent volunteers know each and every child in
their class, and the parent educa on experiences bring people closer together. We bump into CPNS families all the me, and there is an undeniable bond between all of us. This is a unique bond that most people do not experience at a typical dropoﬀ preschool.
2013-2014 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 6
WE NEED YOU TO FUEL
Blossoming at CPNS
One child’s story of growth and transformation
thing be er. A few days later, I saw Ami and Annabel holding hands during circle me. She con nued to make more party hats whenever she missed
mommy, and a er a few weeks, she started to really enjoy
school. Other parents would tell me how Ami was talking to
them, how she was interac ng with her friends, and really coming out of her shell. A er a few more weeks, I would watch her
happily go to the Art Room right a er circle me, waving good-‐
bye to Mommy.
Throughout the year, Ami
and I both learned new skills-me as a parent, and her as
she navigated the social scene
at school. Teacher Conny was extremely suppor ve with the en re process, even when we decided we would have to leave
CPNS since I was going back to work. She gave us advice on how to deal with the transi on for both Ami and her brother.
And of course, even with our
new, busy schedule, we try to
make me for Annabel and the other great friends we made at
CPNS. I enjoyed it so much that I am even thinking of taking me oﬀ work again to do it with my son in a few years!
By Kaori Kobayashi (‘13)
(Top) Kaori and Ami in the ﬁretruck during the ﬁreﬁghters visit (Above) Ami making party hats, a
7 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 2013-2014
Our family joined CPNS in October 2012. We had moved from upstate New York to the Bay Area the past May, and I took the year oﬀ from work to stay home with my then almost three year old daughter and newborn son.
In the beginning, I didn’t know what a co-op preschool
even was, but once we took a tour of the school and
heard the stories, it sounded like a great ﬁt for us. I could be there for my daughter once a week and it was a great
transi on before a full-‐ me preschool. Through working in the classroom and a ending Parent Ed. and the various school events, I thought we could also meet likeminded families living in the area.
At the same me, I had reserva ons. The thought of so many toys and unlimited access to food was also a bit
scary (my daughter loves to eat!). Meanwhile, I wasn’t sure how her li le brother would handle his me in the nursery. But we decided to go with it-‐-‐and we are so happy we did.
My daughter, Ami, as we expected, was not very keen on going to preschool. She had gone to a daycare in New York but without much enthusiasm. She can be very shy in the beginning and doesn’t feel comfortable in unfamiliar situa ons. But here we were, in a diﬀerent state, a new school, and with a new family member.
Ami started crying on day one at CPNS when I had to go check on her brother in the nursery. But while I was gone, another girl in her class, Annabel, had suggested
that maybe Ami would feel be er if they put s ckers on party hats. By the me I came back, Ami had made a friend and was happily si ng down working on her hat.
Knowing that she had a friend at school made every-
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While we do our best to maintain equipment at CPNS, there are always so many items, big and small, that need repairing
or replacing due to wear and tear, that it can be tricky to keep
up. There are certain items that while essen al to the children’s business of play, are harder to fundraise for because they are
not as “urgent” as say, rent and covering salaries. But toys and equipment are the founda on of explora on and coopera ve play-‐-‐which in turn, we know, is the founda on for children’s most important learning. Meanwhile, let’s face it, some of our toys date back to when we ﬁrst started opera ng in the 1960s. The kids need new toys and we need your help to give wings to
their imagina on and roots to their learning. Here are some of the items you can help us update: Play construc on materials (plas c tools, sand bag kits, construc on kits, etc.): $5 and up
2 new strollers: $20 each
3 doctor kits: $25 each
Block Room manipula ves (Magna-‐ les, Magformers, Zoobs, etc.): $25 and up
2013-2014 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 8
quiet me with a book whenever his or her heart desires.
I’ve had so much fun watching my kids transion throughout the years. As their interests and abili es have changed, they have found new and diﬀerent ac vi es to enjoy. For instance, Jesse only played with trains and cars in the Block Room for the en re year in the 2AM Class. He never ventured out even to have a snack. In the
3AM Class, he ate in the Snack Room and played outside, though was s ll mostly in the Block Room. By the 4PM Class, he was doing everything (even a few pain ngs), and had learned to ride a tricycle, so he spent most of his me riding fast outside!
What’s your favorite sta on? Has it changed over me? The Block Room con nues to be my favorite staon. It lends itself to so much crea vity and coopera on, from building trains to playing dress up. Plus, since my kids consistently loved that room most, I was always excited to work there so that I
could be with them.
Growing Conﬁdence and Independence
Andrea Gerola (‘12), an alumni and current CPNSer, teaches kindergarten in the Belmont-‐
Redwood Shores School District. She previously taught kindergarten and ﬁrst grade for 13 years.
What drew you to CPNS when you were selecting a preschool?
I love the outdoor space at CPNS, and also the amount of choices the kids have. The variety of
rooms and ac vi es allows for every interest and mood. If a child has lots of energy, he or she can
go outside at almost any me, but can also have 9 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 2013-2014
As a teacher and CPNSer, you’re witnessing the preschool and elementary school journey. How does CPNS help lay a strong educa onal foundaon?
CPNS does such a good job with conﬂict resoluon, as well as helping kids to gain conﬁdence and independence, which are skills that are really
important for a child’s success in kindergarten.
The philosophy of a play-‐based educa on is very important also, as kids really do learn best by “doing” and prac cing while they are playing. (They don’t even realize they are learning!) I also think the pre-‐k por on is important so that children come to kindergarten able to listen and par cipate in a group se ng, and prepared to further their experience with wri ng and drawing. What do you think (or hope) your kids will take with them from their me at CPNS?
I hope my kids will remember the friends they
made at CPNS. I consider many of the families GROWING
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We Heart CPNS
we’ve met to be friends whom I will remain in
touch with for a long me, and I hope my kids will too. I hope my children will remember that learning is fun and that they can learn from all experiences and people around them (grown-ups and
kids). I also hope they will remember the conﬁdence and independence they learned at CPNS, and that they will carry these skills with them
throughout their lives.
Did you love your time at CPNS? Please
consider sharing your thoughts and
How has CPNS impacted your paren ng journey?
I started coming to the Parent Educa on classes thinking I already knew a lot about child development from my many years of experience in the
classroom with young children. However, I came
to ﬁnd out that there was quite a bit I didn’t know, and there was s ll signiﬁcantly more to learn. For instance, I learned much more about how children’s brains work and react to emo onal s muli. This has helped us to solve numerous conﬂicts at home. I found out that working with and teaching other children is not the same as
working with my own. Many of the strategies that worked in my classrooms do not work at home on
an everyday basis. Through CPNS, I learned many diﬀerent ways to handle challenging situa ons at home.
One of the greatest things about Parent Educaon was the friendships that I made with other parents. I have been able to give and receive so
much good advice not only from the classroom
teacher but also from other families at school. I
know that some of these friendships will last a
life me! I truly feel as if CPNS has been my second home for the last ﬁve years, and it will be hard to let go in May.
Many of the people who are champions of
parent volunteer-run programs throughout the [elementary] school are also CPNS
Alumni News & Updates
NICK DAMON (‘13) is enjoying kindergarten at Cliﬀord Elementary in Redwood City. His favorite ac vity is choice me. His family misses the wonderful CPNS community!
(Above) Teacher Leslie (‘97) and the 4PM
Class ride the tractor
at Bob’s Pumpkin
Patch-‐-‐a ﬁeld trip many alumni may
EKAM MADRA (‘11) is now a second
grader, and he is in a split class where
half the students are third graders.
He is a good student, and was recently described by one of his teachers as
“very conscien ous.” He has become an avid ice skater and started taking
HAILEY LA MONTE (‘11) is doing
hockey lessons this past September. excellent work at North Shoreview He is also in drama class, cub scouts
Montessori. She loves art, wri ng and he plays the ukelele. This year I
and dancing. She is a Brownie and ﬁnally took the plunge and became learning Japanese. Mom got a job the room parent for Ekam’s class. It
at NSM teaching DynEd, a computer has been a fun and rewarding experiprogram that teaches English. Thank ence so far, and some mes challengyou CPNS for all you taught us! ing when other parents seem less
Kasumi Ito than enthusias c to step up and par-
11 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 2013-2014
cipate in the many volunteer opportuni es that are available. I have however no ced that many of the people who are the
champions of parent volunteerrun programs throughout the
school are also CPNS alumni. Par cipa on and involvement are making our elementary
school experience great, and we
always remember our me at CPNS with fondness.
NIHAL MCDERMOTT (‘13) took
oﬀ running into kindergarten (while all the other kids in his
class were escorted in by their
parents). He s ll has those cap va ng eyes when he tells a story and is full of life, enthusiasm,
high energy and BIG feelings. He wants to impress his teacher,
and cherishes his friends. In
Nihal’s down me, you might ﬁnd him assembling train tracks, playing outside with his brother,
watching an episode of Wild GIANNA MADRA (‘13) is havKra s, or enjoying his ﬁrst place ing a great me in kindergarten, trophy for best costume (owl).
loves her new teacher and has
made lots of new friends. She s ll speaks o en of CPNS and ROSHUN MCDERMOTT (‘11)
says she misses Teacher Leslie
started second grade and absomost of all. She enjoys ice skatlutely loves to learn. He takes
ing, ballet and is star ng to on challenges like learning
par cipate in Daisy Scouts. She piano, improving soccer skills,
recently completed an a er-‐
and earning Cub Scout badges school carpentry class along
with enthusiasm. In his downwith her big brother Ekam
me, you might ﬁnd him in the where she made a birdhouse
backyard playing wall ball or
and a spinning top.
soccer, drawing some amazing Adina Madra art, reading chapter books, or
making music with any number
of instruments lying around the
house. He is s ll though ul and sensi ve, and a fantas c older brother.
ANNABEL OKAMOTO (‘11) is
in pre-‐k at North Shoreview Montessori, where her favorite things to do are banana cu ng, ﬂower arranging and polishing shoes. She talks about CPNS often and loves when we drive by
the school. Annabel asks if she
can stop by to see her friends
and show Teacher Conny that she can do “skip one” on the
ELIZABETH TEMPLE (‘08) is in
fourth grade now and is living
in West Virginia with her family. She is doing great in school and loves to hang out with her
Lize e L. Temple
2013-2014 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 12
FRIENDS OF CPNS CAMPING TRIP
Alumni and current members con nue to gather together to celebrate family, learning, fun-‐-‐and the wonderful community that is CPNS. THE 22ND ANNUAL CAMPING TRIP
(Above) Friends gather around the campﬁre ready for songs and s’mores. (Opposite, clockwise from left) Nihal
(‘13), Corey (‘11) and Roshun (‘11) ham it up; Leo Ashkinaziy (‘12) bundles up baby; Log slide!
13 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 2013-2014
at Memorial Park was full of laughter and relaxing, mul ple trips to the beau ful “big” hollow tree, creek walking and
exploring, and all-around great company.
A special thank you to Aileen Snodgrass and her family for organizing and suppor ng such a wonderful tradi on. 2013-2014 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 14
Thank you to the Events Team for a
fabulous Spooky Social! And a special thank you to the alumni who a ended and volunteered:
Corey Alger (‘11)
Ana Alvarez-‐Rutz (‘05) Will Alvarez-‐Rutz (‘05)
Sadie Boynton (‘08) Eve Fernandez (‘13)
Eva Hasenbein (‘13)
Elise La merlo (‘13)
Maya McCourt-‐Heraut (‘08) Tuuli Pareenja (‘13)
Evan Snodgrass Grace Snodgrass
15 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 2013-2014
(Opposite top) Teachers
Leslie, Conny and Nancy
brighten the party.
(Opposite bottom) The
Snodgrass siblings help their
younger brother, Jackson, to
(Top) The Hasenbein Family
hams it up.
(Right) A 2AM tiger enjoys
the “Spooky Book Walk”
2013-2014 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 16
GRAPE AND GRAIN AUCTION PARTY
FAMILY PLAY DATE
April 26 at 10:00 a.m.
Loca on TBD
(Clockwise from top)
Enjoying the company of
friends; Bid sheets and
goodies; Dessert table!
SAN CARLOS HOMETOWN DAYS
May 17 & 18
Parade & Face Pain ng Booth
Burton Park, 900 Chestnut St. [email protected]
SUMMER CAMP: SESSION 1
June 10-‐26 / 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Registra on info coming soon! [email protected]
FRIENDS OF CPNS CAMPING TRIP
Memorial Park, Pescadero
THE CPNS “GRAPE & GRAIN” EVENT (complete with silent auc on) was a huge success again this year. We raised over $4,000 to help our school con nue to inspire young minds. And we did it with the help of CPNS families past and present. Thank you to all who came and to those who bid for auc on items!
The food was sumptuous with gourmet sandwiches and sides from Fare, followed by an array of mouth-‐watering desserts. But really, you know your CPNS party is a success when Teacher Leslie and Teacher Nancy head for the dance ﬂoor and boogie down, non-‐stop, with the other parents. The Fundraising Team, led by Alison Baxley, went all out this year. The decor was rich and the atmosphere both in mate and “happening.” D.J. Shannon rocked the house.
Susanne Bornhoevd, in her sixth year of ac ve co-‐oping at CPNS, summed it all up when she said: “I loved the auc on. The food was great, from a new restaurant in town we hadn’t tried yet. The DJ played fun dance music we all enjoyed-‐-‐and we danced a lot! The auc on items were fabulous. And the space was newly renovated and felt very invi ng. Alison and her team did an amazing job organizing the party and staying totally cool in the process!”
A huge thank you to the Fundraising Team: Alison Baxley, Soﬁ Fulmer, Kate Ostheimer and Young Kim.
17 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 2013-2014
SUMMER CAMP: SESSION 2
July 8-‐24 / 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Registra on info coming soon! [email protected]
(Top) Summer Camp water play
(Above) Hiking with headlamps at
the camping trip
2013-2014 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 18
THE MUSIC ENRICHMENT FUND
Director & 3AM Teacher
2AM & Pre-K Teacher
4PM & Friday Fun Teacher
Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind,
ﬂight to the imagination and life to everything.
We need your help to update and improve our music enrichment program. Kids learn so much through music, from spa al awareness (through dance) to language and rhythm. It can even help “organize” the brain and have other surprising eﬀects such as improving math skills! We try to keep the music ﬂowing at CPNS, but our equipment and music collec on is out of date. Can you help?
We need: 2 acous c guitars: $50 each 2 ukuleles: $35 each
2 marching drums: $20 each
1 banjo: $100
1 lap harp: $40
Funds for quarterly music guests: $25 & up per visit A dona on in cash or new equipment would greatly improve our ability to support this important program, allowing children to engage in play and group ac vi es centered around music, fostering a life-long love of this art.
19 CPNS ALUMNI NEWSLETTER 2013-2014
Lisha Davidovits, Lori Low & Gauri Ma
REGISTER FOR 2014-2015
STAY IN TOUCH
CARLMONT PARENTS NURSERY SCHOOL / 751 ALAMEDA DE LAS PULGAS / BELMONT, CA 94002 / (650) 593-4155